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Steel-High wins wild one over West Perry, 53-34

Written by: on Saturday, October 29th, 2022. Follow Sean McBryan on Twitter.


Steelton-Highspire and West Perry offenses average over 40 points per game.

It was likely that a different aspect of the game would have to be the difference in deciding the Mid-Penn Capital division title game between the Steamrollers and Mustangs Saturday afternoon at a sunny War Veterans Memorial Stadium in Steelton.

That proved to be the case as the teams combined for 87 total points Saturday.

It ended up being the Rollers’ winning the turnover battle 3-1, including a sensational one-handed interception by defensive back Daquan McCraw, and Steel-High pulled away for a 53-34 victory after jumping out to an early four-score lead.

McCraw’s interception came after the Rollers (6-0, 8-1) already held a 14-0 advantage, and although he returned it to the 24, a penalty gave Steel-High the ball at the 50. It didn’t matter.

Alex Erby hit Jaeiron Perry and Durrell Ceasar for gains of 23 and 25 and Ronald Burnette scored from the 5 to make it 21-0 with 4:10 left in the first quarter.

“It kind of came out of nowhere,” McCraw said of the interception. “I had a mindset the whole game that if the ball was in the air, I’m going to be the one to go get it on offense and defense. I ended up getting that pick and it changed the whole momentum of the entire game.”

Tylishaun Parker recovered the short opening kickoff and Erby found Perry for a 10-yard touchdown four plays later. After Steel-High forced the Mustangs (5-1, 9-1) to punt, the Rollers embarked on an eight-play, 74-yard drive capped by Burnette’s 7-yard TD.

Following the score after McCraw’s interception, the Mustangs turned it over on downs and Erby immediately hit Perry for 42 yards down to the 3. Burnette tacked on another to make it 27-0 with 1:47 left in the first quarter.

West Perry answered with a quick-strike 55-yarder from Quaker to Derek Snook to make it 27-7 just 21 seconds later.

Erby hit Perry for a 30-yard TD with 8:24 left in the first half to extend the lead to 34-7.

Derek Snook caught a 26-yard pass and had a 20-yard run for the West Perry offense on the next drive, which Tucker Ziegler finished with a 1-yard plunge to make it 34-14 at the 4:45 mark.

Then McCraw made his second one-handed catch on a 60-yard bomb from Erby just 1:13 into the third quarter and the Rollers were back up by 27.

McCraw wasn’t wearing gloves today, switching it up after he’s had some problems with drops occasionally this season.

“Everybody’s been in my ear about it,” McCraw said. “You know, I just took it into consideration. I was like alright, let me see what it’s like without the gloves today. It just happened so quick. As soon as it hit my hands I just knew that was my ball.”

The Mustangs didn’t go out without a fight.

Marcus Quaker hit Ian Goodling for a 43-yard TD with 5:27 left in the third and found him again from 29 yards away to make it 41-27 just 2:17 later.

But Erby, who finished with 380 passing yards and four TDs, and his receivers were relentless through the air and Burnette, who finished with 104 rushing yards and four TDs, continued to churn out tough yardage on the ground for Steel-High.

Erby hit Ceasar for a 30-yard TD with 44 seconds left before the fourth.

Quaker scored a 3-yard rushing TD with 8:26 left in the game, but Burnette finished a 52-yard drive with a 2-yard TD to seal a 53-34 victory for the Rollers with 5:40 left.

Steel-High will face Fairfield in the District 3 Class 1A championship with the winner moving on to states.

“We want to prepare the right way for all of our opponents,” McCraw said. “Of course we do want to come out on top next week, make it farther down the road in playoffs and into states.”

The Mid-Penn Capital title is back in the Rollers’ hands after falling to Boiling Springs last year.

The loss is a bitter one for West Perry, which will be the No. 3 seed in the District 3 Class 3A tournament. The Mustangs have steadily improved from 2-5 to 5-6 to 9-1 the past three seasons.




Passing: Erby 20-26-0–380 (4 TDs).

Rushing: Burnette 20-104 (4 TDs), Perry 6-45, Parker 4-14, McCraw 1-3, Appleby 1-(-4), Erby 8-(-10).

Receiving: Ceasar Jr. 9-172 (TD), Perry 5-111 (2 TDs), McCraw 4-99 (TD), Burnette 2-17.

Penalty: 9-82

Punt-avg: 1-32.

First downs: 29.

Fumbles-lost: 2-1.

West Perry

Passing: Quaker 10-16-1–202 (3 TDs).

Rushing: Herrera 20-66, Snook 7-37, Quaker 12-35 (TD), Ziegler 1-1 (TD).

Receiving: Herrera 5-31, Goodling 3-90 (2 TDs), Snook 2-81 (TD).

Penalty: 10-50.

Punt-avg: 2-38.

First downs: 14.

Fumbles-lost: 4-2.

Scoring Summary

Steelton-Highspire (6-0, 8-1) 27 7 13 6 – 53

West Perry (5-1, 9-1) 7 7 13 7 – 34

1st Quarter

SH-Perry 10 pass from Erby (Hernandez kick failed) – 10:42

SH-Burnette 7 run (Perry pass from Erby) – 6:10

SH-Burnette 5 run (Hernandez kick) – 4:10

SH-Burnette 3 run (Hernandez kick missed) – 1:47

WP-Snook 55 pass from Quaker (Goodling kick) – 1:26

2nd Quarter

SH-Perry 30 pass from Erby (Hernandez kick) – 8:24

WP-Ziegler 1 run (Goodling kick) – 4:45

3rd Quarter

SH-McCraw 60 pass from Erby (Hernandez kick) – 10:47

WP-Goodling 43 pass from Quaker (Goodling kick) – 5:27

WP-Gooding 29 pass from Quaker (Goodling kick missed) – 3:10

SH-Ceasar Jr. 30 pass from Erby (Hernandez kick missed) – 0:44

4th Quarter

WP-Quaker 3 run (Goodling kick) – 8:26

SH-Burnette 2 run (Two-point conversion failed) – 5:40

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